Lung Infections: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment
June 22, 2022
Viruses, bacteria, or fungus can cause a lung infection. Pneumonia is one of the most common types of lung infections. Pneumonia is most often caused by bacteria but can also be caused by viruses. A person becomes infected by breathing in the bacteria or virus after a person coughing or sneezing.
A lung infection occurs when a harmful microorganism, such as a bacterium or virus gets into the lungs and causes damage. The severity of an infection in the lungs can range from mild to life-threatening.
Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs that can cause inflammation. In pneumonia, the lungs’ air sacs can get inflamed. This can cause the lungs to fill up with air, making breathing difficult.
Bacteria, fungi, and viruses can cause pneumonia. For example, streptococcus pneumonia can cause bacterial pneumococcal pneumonia. The COVID-19 respiratory disease caused the pandemic.
Symptoms of Lung Infection
Various symptoms are associated with a lung infection, from mild to severe. This is based on your age, overall health, and the cause of the infection. The cold or flu symptoms may be similar but tend to last longer.
- Cough: The cough may be either dry or “wet” (mucus-producing) or mild or severe.
- Mucus production: It may vary, but it is often clear, yellow, green, brown, or rusty without an odour.
- Wheezing: Wheezing most often occurs on expiration (expiration), but in some cases, it can occur both at the end and on inspiration. When breathing in, there is usually a higher-pitched sound, called stridor, mainly caused by inspiration. Stridor is often seen with infections in the airways above the lungs, such as the windpipe (trachea) with epiglottitis.
- Fever can be mild (temperature is below 100 degrees F), moderate (temperature is between 101 and 103 degrees F), or high (temperature is above 104 degrees F).
- Chills (severe colds may be called chills): These can occur when the fever increases, and sometimes sweats (soaked sweats) can occur when the fever goes down.
- Symptoms of the upper respiratory tract: nasal congestion, sore throat, hoarseness, laryngitis and headache are common, especially viral infections.
- Body ache: You may experience pain in your muscles and back when you have a lung infection. This is a pain in myalgia. Sometimes you can develop inflammation in your muscles which can cause pain when you have an infection.
- Bluish appearance of the skin or lips: The colour of your lips or nails may be bluish due to a lack of oxygen.
- Shortness of breath: Shortness of breath means you feel like it’s difficult to breathe or that you can’t breathe in fully. You should seek medical attention immediately if you have difficulty breathing.
Causes of Lung Infection
Pneumonia is typically caused by infectious pathogens, such as bacteria and viruses. These pathogens can spread by coughing and sneezing by coming into contact with surfaces people touch. Most people get pneumonia caused by germs by breathing them in through the small air sacs in their lungs. The body’s immune system responds by sending white blood cells to attack the infection, which can cause inflammation of the air sacs. As a result, the alveoli fill with fluid and pus, causing pneumonia.
Risk factors of Lung Infection
Risk factors for lung infections can change based on a particular infection, but some common factors increase some, if not all, of these infections.
Common risk factors are:
- Exposure to smoking or indirect smoking
- Exposure to air pollution or dust in the workplace
- History of asthma or allergies
- Crowded living environment
- Northern hemisphere winter moon
- Dry mucous membrane
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Face, head, neck, or airway-related anatomical problems, including problems such as nasal polyps and nasal polyps
Risk factors of Lung Infection in children
Risk factors present primarily in children include:
- Increased exposure through daycare, school, or multiple sibling settings
- being a man
- Bottle feeding (instead of breastfeeding)
- pacifier use
- Age (children under 6 years of age are generally more susceptible, and bronchiolitis occurs more frequently in younger children under two years)
- Children born to mothers who smoke during pregnancy
- Congenital heart and/or lung disease
Treatment for Lung Infection
A bacterial infection usually requires antibiotics to clear it up. For example, a lung fungal infection will require treatment with an antifungal medication, such as ketoconazole or voriconazole.
Antibiotics won’t work on viruses. In most cases, you have to wait until your body fights off the infection on its own. At the same time, you can help your body fight infection and make you more comfortable with the following home care remedies:
- Take acetaminophen or ibuprofen to reduce fever
- Drink a lot of water
- Try hot tea with honey or ginger
- Gargle with salt water
- Rest as much as possible
- Use a humidifier to create moisture in the air
- take any prescription antibiotics until it goes away
Prevention of Lung Infection
What can I do to avoid getting sick with upper respiratory infections?
Stay healthy and stay together. Protect your health by avoiding contact with people who are sick. Drink more water. Get enough sleep; stop smoking.
Lung infections can be severe, often spreading deep into the lungs or travelling to the bloodstream. It can be dire when damage occurs to other organs due to a disease. However, there is no need to worry if you don’t receive prompt medical care, as it can be very lifesaving. If a person suspects a lung infection, they should call a doctor.
People also ask
1. What are the symptoms of a lung infection?
Fever, sweating, and shivering are common symptoms of a fever. Shortness of breath is a common problem. Slow, deep breathing. You may experience sharp or stabbing chest pain that worsens when breathing deeply or coughing. This may be a sign that you have a heart problem.
2. How severe is a lung infection?
The severity of a lung infection can vary from mild to life-threatening. Although most lung infections are treatable and most people recover, these infections are also dangerous. In addition, people with weakened immune systems are especially vulnerable to catching colds.
3. What happens if the lungs get an infection?
The infection causes the lungs’ air sacs to be inflamed and filled with fluid puAs a result; it can be hard for the oxygen you breathe in to get into your bloodstream. Pneumonia can have a wide range of symptoms, from mild to severe, including coughing, fever, chills, and trouble breathing.
4. What does the start of a lung infection feel like?
Fever, sweating and shaking chills. Shortness of breath. Rapid, shallow breathing. Sharp or stabbing chest pain worsens when you breathe deeply or cough.